An insecure woman may act out directly to her partner, through her fear of a failed relationship, by becoming needy and desperate. Alternatively, her failed father/daughter bond could harbor a growing resentment towards all men (including those she loves), and she may find comfort by invoking conflict or arguments to justify her anger. Lastly, she could avoid conflict altogether by being overly agreeable, indecisive and keeping the relationship on a superficial level (no controversy equals no risk of failure).
That being said, a more secure and self-aware woman may tend towards coping behavior she learned from this failed bond. However, if the relationship has potential, then there are ways to identify and overcome this potential obstacle.
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Having lived with this attitude since childhood, she could be oblivious to its effect on a developing relationship, or she could assume that if her failed relationship goes unresolved, she will feel as if she’s beholden to the pain (a little melodramatic, I know, but remember, she created this feeling in her wildly-dramatic, youthful mind).
A good place to start would be by initiating a candid conversation with her about her entire family, not just dad. Sharing good memories along with the bad helps her to keep things in perspective. She may begin to appreciate that, even if her relationship with her father is estranged or nonexistent, she can assign that disconnect to him as an individual, not a representation of all valued relationships she experiences.
The best “gift” her partner can offer is respect. Respect the importance of this loss to her and don’t reply with cynicism or ridicule. Respect the time it may take her to embrace a new perspective.
This concern does not have to be a deal-breaker. All relationships face challenges, which can be overcome if handled with mutual respect, patience, acceptance and willingness to appreciate our never-ending differences.
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Relationship Coach Kelly J.